Police: Organized Crime Groups Traffic Palestinians Into Israel

500 Israelis were jailed in 2007 for transporting Palestinians who crossed without necessary permits.

Organized crime groups have recently started smuggling Palestinians into Israel, Superintendent Eli Davidson of the police national investigations unit told the Knesset Internal Affairs and Environment Committee on Tuesday.

The committee, headed by Labor MK Ophir Pines-Paz, debated the extension of the effect of a temporary regulation aimed at forbidding the transportation of Palestinians who enter Israel without sufficient permits.

Police figures that were presented to the panel indicate that nearly 500 people were jailed in the course of 2007 for driving Palestinians who had not been accorded permits. 300 others were sentenced to suspended imprisonment and another 20 were acquitted.

A Shin Bet security service official told the panel that among the detainees were some of the people who drove the perpetrators of last month's suicide bombing in Dimona to the site.